Diana Borja
1946 - 2020
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BORJA, Diana Diana Borja was born on June 2, 1946 and raised in Brownsville, Texas by her parents, Gilberto Borja and Lillian Longoria Borja. She graduated from Villa Maria High School in 1964. Diana attended Texas A&I in Kingsville where she graduated with a B.S. Degree. She became a registered Dietician and moved with her family to Austin in 1970. In 1974, she began a career with the City of Austin. She became the first Director of the new WIC program and also served as an early volunteer with the Meals on Wheels Program. Over the next several years, she became an active member of the Mexican American Business and Professional Women's Association and also served on a City of Austin Charter Revision Commission. She gained more responsibilities within the City/County Health Department and eventually served for several years as Director of the City/County Indigent Care Clinics. In 1993, Diana left the City of Austin to serve as Director of Border Affairs for the Texas Commission On Environmental Quality. For the next 15 years, she and her staff collaborated with environmental departments from border states in both the United States and Mexico promoting clean water and air quality along the border with Mexico. Diana was a devout Catholic and served her church in many capacities, especially over the last 20 years at St. Ignatius, Martyr where she was both a Lector and a Eucharistic Minister. She was particularly happy when taking Eucharist to the sick and homebound, often with her husband Rafael and granddaughter, Liliana Longoria. In the mid 1980's, Diana began attending meetings of a new community of Secular Discalced Carmelites. She made her final promises in 1989 and from 2005 through 2011, she served as the Community's Director of Formation. In the late 1970's, Diana became interested in learning more about the history of her family in the Rio Grande Valley. She learned that on her mother's side of the family, her Longoria ancestors had been among the founders of Reynosa, Mexico about 1749. Over the years thru research and interviews with family members, she developed a family data base with over 10,000 names. At the request of her uncle, Joe Longoria, she took on the restoration of the tomb of her great Grandfather, Juan Miguel Longoria. In 1998, hundreds of relatives gathered at the Longoria Cemetery near Santa Maria, Texas to dedicate the restoration. She then applied for and was granted a State of Texas historical marker to preserve the history of the Longoria family in the area. Diana was preceded in death by her parents. She is survived by her husband of thirty-eight years, Rafael Quintanilla, her daughter, Patricia Longoria, (husband, Pedro), three granddaughters, Liliana, Alessandra, and Emma Longoria, sisters, Sylvia Zavaleta (husband, Tom), and Yolanda Borja, her step-mother, Emma Borja, and countless cousins, nieces, nephews, as well as one aunt, Ella Longoria, of Mission, Texas. The family would like to extend their deepest thanks and gratitude to the staff at Auberge at Onion Creek and Hospice Austin for the quality and compassionate care given to our beloved Diana. Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 PM on Thursday, October 15, 2020 at Harrell Funeral Home, with the Rosary at 7:00 PM. Mass of Christian Burial will be 10:00 AM Friday, October 16, 2020 at St. Ignatius Martyr Catholic Church. Burial will follow at Assumption Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family asks for donations to be submitted to Meals on Wheels of Central Texas in memory of Diana Borja by visiting www.MealsonWheelscentralTexas.org Condolences may be sent to: www.harrellfuneralhomes.com.


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Published in Austin American-Statesman on Oct. 15, 2020.
MEMORIAL EVENTS
OCT
15
Visitation
05:00 - 07:00 PM
Harrell Funeral Home
OCT
15
Rosary
07:00 PM
Harrell Funeral Home
OCT
16
Mass of Christian Burial
10:00 AM
St. Ignatius Martyr Catholic Church
Memories & Condolences
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5 entries
October 18, 2020
We are never prepared for the loss of a loved one. But God is always prepared to help us through that loss. May his presence begin the healing in your hearts and souls. Treasure and share your memories of your mom. Our most sincere condolences. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Raul Garcia
Raul Garcia
Neighbor
October 16, 2020
Raphael y su familia

Nancy and I are saddened to learn of Diana’s passing. We treasured our friendship with you both and Diana was great fun to work with during our years at theTCEQ. Her life and work were of great service to Texas and Mexico and she did a great deal of good on both sides of the Rio Bravo. We will miss her
David Guarino
Coworker
October 16, 2020
I had the great honor and privilege to work with Diana when she was at the TCEQ, and I at the EPA. I admired her knowledge, professionalism, and love for protecting the environment. As a young Latina, Diana was my mentor. May her memory be a blessing!
Gina Weber
Coworker
October 15, 2020
“May our heavenly Father sustain your family, during this difficult time."
October 15, 2020
Diana was a very professional and well respected colleague. I worked with her for many years at TNRCC and later TCEQ on the US/Mexico program. I enjoyed immensely our conversations about the Lower Rio Grande Valley and the people there. My sincere condolences to her family.
Israel Anderson
Coworker
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